Pay Attention to Your Toddler — It Helps Her Learn

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profile picture of Sarah Yang
February 28, 2017
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How you respond to your child’s calls for attention will affect how eager they are to collaborate and learn. According to a new study in the journal Child Development, researchers found that toddlers whose parents responded positively to their attention-seeking behaviors were more eager to collaborate and socialize. In the study, the parent and the child were in the same room and the parent had to fill out a long survey that required a lot of attention and focus, while toddlers tried to engage their parents. In the second part of the study, the child had to watch her parent perform a series of actions and try to imitate them. Researchers found that toddlers who showed positive attention-seeking behaviors (like pointing and sharing objects or laughing and smiling while talking to their parent, rather than crying or screaming) collaborated more with their parent to finish the task.

Researchers note that it’s important to encourage positive and high-quality attention-seeking in toddlers – which means actively engaging with them. The toddlers who seek attention in a positive manner are more likely to learn in an interactive and social way.

What do you think of this study? Do you think you pay enough attention to your child?

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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